Yes, it’s been a long, long time. I left you in Australia and since we have cruised the outer islands of Vanuatu. I won’t linger over this experience as it wasn’t the best. Thunderstorms, rough days at sea in a steel hull catamaran and travelling with ‘wealthy’ NZers an experience best not repeated. Flying Air Vanuatu from Port Vila to San Francisco via Fiji a nasty experience. The airline lost our luggage somehow sending it back to Sydney. By this time the south seas had really soured for us.

Halleluiah! We hit Los Angeles which totally blew its own myth of rude officialdom, grouchy people, disorganized and dirty. So it was in the 70s and 80s and even the 90s as Harry remembers it. I remember having read somewhere how the entire ground staff were put on mandatory customer service courses to brush up the LAX experience for tourists. It’s worked and was the best passage through an Immigration area I’ve ever had. Flew up to San Francisco and within a couple of hours we were headed to Vacaville, California.

As arranged we met up with Andrew, our real estate rep I’d been communicating with for about 6 months. We inspected about a dozen homes before we found the ‘perfect’ hangout for the four of us, i.e. Harry, Lorraine, Magic & Bonnie. We put in an offer the next day and a day later 101 Currant Lane was ours. Not many photos as yet, cos it was a bit of a ‘dog’ needing complete redecoration internal; painting and recarpeting. Not a stick of furniture – back to locating some furniture, bedding. Up the road to Fairfield for a bed and. A Scandinavian furniture outlet and we found a couch; outdoor/indoor tables and chairs.

California is in a 7 year drought with no sign of it getting any better. We’re located in Northern California where in fact there’s plenty of water from the ice melt from the Sierra Nevadas. However most of the water is syphoned off and fed down to the more densely populated area of southern California, Los Angeles, Orange County etc.

The outome of all this was we didn’t want a pool to maintain anymore; we didn’t want a garden and even grass was a bit of a luxury.  So we’ve bought into a community that has a private pool, does the gardening and we’ve ripped out the lawn and laid plastic grass!  Oh by the way, our new carpet is polyester and it’s like walking on silk.

We managed to squeeze in a couple of weeks at the time share in Lake Tahoe and a week at a Shakespeare festival in Ashland, Oregon.

Phew!  Exhausted and feeling neither here or there, we jumped on a cruise that sailed us into a hurricane!  We’ve made it to New York, and my next post will be from the Big Apple filling you in on the weird and wonderful here.